Plant the Planet – yes WE can!

Mar 29, 2017Biodiversity, Community Conservation0 comments

by Gary Simons

This post is being read on the Gondwana Alive site, and has been posted in our Facebook page. That got me thinking about how Social Media can help to rapidly transform the planet back to its healthy, green state.

So, follow the journey of a scenario about trees and mathematics. No, not calculus or algebra, just straight arithmetic.

There are, currently, 4750 likes on our Facebook page. Each person commits to plant a tree within a week, in an appropriate place. Then to tell 2 others of their plan, and ask them to join in our giant planetary experiment. They in turn tell 2 others. Either friends, colleagues at work, your ward councillor, pastor, sangoma, guru, lecturer strangers in the checkout line when you’re doing your shopping, etc.

Now for some arithmetic:

Level 1. 4750 x 2 = 9500

Level 2. 9500 x 2 = 19000

Level 3 19000 x 2 = 38000

Level 4. 38000 x 2 = 76000

Level 5. 76000 x 2 = 152000

Level 6. 152000 x 2 = 304000

Level 7. 304000 x 2 = 608000

Level 8. 608000 x 2 = 1 216 000

OK! You’re getting the picture, or is that the view of our amazing new forests. But there’s more. If, when each person committed to plant a tree (or other form of bio-diverse foliage) they did so within a week, how many plantings in a year at level 52? Clue. I had to adjust my spreadsheet settings to get a figure that didn’t have E+19 at the end.


Yes, I know there aren’t that many people on the plant, but the point is made. And hey, why does each person only have to plant one. Maybe it’s one a month.

And, all of this from the simple compound beauty of our 4750 followers.

No doubt there’ll be detractors and arguments against the actual literalness of this happening. But let me ask this. Why don’t we just go for it anyway? Who cares if we don’t get to the number of Week 52? What will happen is we’ll plant a LOT of trees, etc. And we’ll develop community in the process. Community that knows that by doing a seeming little thing like planting a tree, when done with networking and exponential growth, amounts to not insignificant help for the planet getting a green lung transplant.

So here’s the challenge. Let’s go for it. Let’s support and encourage everyone we know to be part of our vision. Make use of the ubiquitous social media we have access to. Use our FB site to tell us your stories, share your photos, send us your Social media video links, etc. Share thoughts, suggestions, tips. Contact Nolo at Gondwana to get an insight into how permaculture principles can inform your choices of what to plant. Remember to check out what’s natural, not alien, in your geographical area. If you don’t have a garden, remember one of our greatest carbon trappers (Spekboom) can grow in pots on your flat verandah, etc.

Who’s in? Excellent! Let’s Plant the Planet!